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Guide to the Mark D. Weiser Papers, 1969-1999
Special Collections M1069  
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  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biography
  • Chronological Biography

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Mark D. Weiser Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1969-1999
    Collection number: Special Collections M1069
    Creator: Weiser, Mark D.
    Extent: 94 linear ft.
    Repository: Stanford University. Libraries. Dept. of Special Collections and University Archives.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information

    Access Restrictions

    The contents of the Business Plan series are restricted until June 2019.

    Publication Rights

    Property rights reside with the repository. Literary rights reside with the creators of the documents or their heirs. To obtain permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Public Services Librarian of the Dept. of Special Collections.


    Gift of Victoria Reich, 1999 May.

    Preferred Citation:

    [Identification of item] Mark D. Weiser Papers, M1069, Dept. of Special Collections, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, Calif.


    Dr. Mark Weiser was the Chief Technologist at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC). Weiser never received a bachelor's degree but earned his PhD in Computer and Communications Sciences from the University of Michigan (1979). Weiser was assistant and associate professor and associate chair in the Computer Science Department at the University of Maryland from 1979 to 1987, when he joined Xerox PARC as a member of the technical staff, then heading the Computer Science Laboratory for seven years. He started three companies. His over 75 technical publications are on such areas as the psychology of programming, program slicing, operating systems, programming environments, garbage collection, and technological ethics. Weiser's work since 1988 focused on Ubiquitous Computing, a program he initiated that envisions PC's being replaced with invisible computers embedded in everyday objects. He believed that this will lead to an era of "calm technology", in which technology, rather than panicking us, helps us focus on what is really important to us.
    Mark Weiser was born on July 23, 1952 in Chicago, Illinois. Named Mark David Weiser after his father, David, he moved with his family to Mt. Carroll, Illinois when he was four years old. There he enjoyed a peaceful existence with his paper route, electronic projects, and garage band the Outsiders (not the Outsiders). At the age of fourteen he and his family moved to Ithaca, New York and after one year moved to Stony Brook, New York where he finished high school.
    Weiser was also the drummer of the rock band Severe Tire Damage, the first live band on the Internet.
    He died in May 1999 and is survived by his widow, Victoria Reich, and their two daughters, Nicole Reich-Weiser and Corinne Reich-Weiser.

    Chronological Biography

    1967 (First paid programming work, Chemistry Department, Cornell University)
    1970-1975 Omnitext, Inc., Programmer, Ann Arbor, MI
    1973-1976 Cerberus Inc., Co-founder and President, Ann Arbor, MI
    1973-1976 Portable Information Systems, Ltd., Co-founder and Vice-President, Ann Arbor, MI
    1974-1979 University of Michigan, Research Assistant and MTS Counselor
    1975-1976 MIS International, Project Leader, Detroit, MI
    1979-1987 University of Maryland Computer Science Department.
    1979-1984 Assistant Professor, University of Maryland Computer Science Department.
    1981-1984 Laboratory Director, University of Maryland Computer Science Department
    1984-1987 Associate Professor, University of Maryland Computer Science Department
    1986-1987 Associate Chairman, University of Maryland Computer Science Department
    1987 May - 1999 June Xerox PARC.
    1988 Nov. - 1994 Dec. Head of the Computer Science Laboratory; Principal Scientist since 1988.
    1999 Chief Technologist, Xerox PARC.